HOW TO GET THE GLORY BACK
Below are notes to a sermon preached Sunday evening, Aug. 8, 1999, at Gospel Light Baptist Church, Albany, Georgia:
HOW TO GET THE GLORY BACK
By Michael D. O’Neal Pastor, Gospel Light Baptist Church Albany, Georgia
Scripture Reading: 1 Samuel 4:10-22
Text: 1 Samuel 4:22
Introduction: This is one of the saddest scenes in the Bible to me. An old priest named Eli died, a woman’s husband died, and she died in child birth. Probably worse than the deaths, however, was the fact that the ark of God had been taken from the Philistines. As a sad token to the fact, the baby was named, “Ichabod,” which means, “the glory is departed.” The ark of God contained the word of God, the 10 commandments.
Our nation has kicked the word of God out of its school system, a system in place for the training of future citizens. Many of our ministerial schools have rejected the authority of the word of God because of a respect for “scholarly,” although Satanic, criticism. Many churches have forsaken the word of God, by trading it in for newer versions like the NIV, the NASB, and others, and by replacing its methods with those of business marketing firms and Hollywood producers. Even individual believers have dismissed the word of God, choosing to read the newspaper rather than the daily bread of God. In doing so, our nation, our seminaries, our churches, and many individuals have lost the glory of God upon them.
Moses had a holy glow about him after he spent time with God. Stephen, filled with the Spirit of God, appeared before his accusers to have the face of an angel. Do you have that glow from being close to God? Did you have it once but now have lost it? I think in order to the the glory back, we need to do the very opposite of the things that led to the loss of it among the Israelites:
I. LET’S CONTROL OF OUR SONS AND DAUGHTERS
1 Samuel 3:11-14 And the LORD said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel, at which both the ears of every one that heareth it shall tingle. 12 In that day I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house: when I begin, I will also make an end. 13 For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not. 14 And therefore I have sworn unto the house of Eli, that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for ever.
A. By caring for them
B. By consistency before them
C. By commanding them
D. By chastening them
II. LET’S CLEAN UP THE SAINTS
1 Samuel 2:22 Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
1 Corinthians 5:1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.
A. By hiding the word in our hearts
B. By heeding the word that we hear
C. By holding the word forth to each other
III. LET’S CLEAVE TO THE SCRIPTURES
1 Samuel 4:11 And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain.
The ark contained the word of God. The Israelites allowed God’s word to be taken from them.
2 Samuel 23:10 He arose, and smote the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand clave unto the sword: and the LORD wrought a great victory that day; and the people returned after him only to spoil.
I like that. The Bible is the sword of the Spirit, and we should cleave to it. To those who would try to talk me into forsaking the AV 1611 for the newer versions, I say: “You can have my King James Bible when you can pry it loose from my cold, dead fingers.”
In order to cleave to the scriptures:
A. We must recognize them when we see them
B. We must revere them as God’s words
C. We must remember them and not let them slip away from us
IV. LET’S CONSECRATE OURSELVES TO SOUL-WINNING
1 Samuel 4:19 And his daughter in law, Phinehas’ wife, was with child, near to be delivered: and when she heard the tidings that the ark of God was taken, and that her father in law and her husband were dead, she bowed herself and travailed; for her pains came upon her.
It was important to women in the Bible to have children. Likewise, we are saved in order to bring forth fruit unto God even as people do in a marriage.
Romans 7:4 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
A. It will bring Jesus to the heart
B. It will bring joy to heaven
C. It will bring a “jolt” to the house of God